Life Insurance For Digestive Diseases In 2024

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Updated: 18 May 2024
Written by
Bob Phillips
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If you have digestive diseases, you might be thinking about life insurance and wondering if you can even get it.

We’ve conducted extensive research on the topic of life insurance for those with digestive diseases, and compiled information and data in this article that should be of assistance to you.

Nowadays, many insurers offer term insurance along with whole life options for those with digestive diseases. We’ll check out those and other options, as well as pointers on how to qualify for life insurance with digestive diseases, provide tips about coverage details, and more. Our mission is to offer help to anyone who needs guidance in choosing the right life insurance policy for their needs.

Key Takeaways

  • Life insurance for individuals with digestive diseases is available

  • Underwriting for digestive diseases might be more complex and extensive than standard applicants

  • Life insurance premiums are often higher if you have digestive diseases

Can You Get Life Insurance With Digestive Diseases?

Yes, most people with digestive diseases can get life insurance. Much depends on the severity and type of the digestive disease, of course. Prior to advancements in the medical field, people with digestive diseases were frequently declined for insurance coverage. But today, because of the progress of medicine and better knowledge of this condition,  numerous top insurance providers (detailed below) will offer term life as well as whole life insurance coverage for people with digestive diseases.

While it’s encouraging that life insurance is available now for most digestive diseases, the fact is that not all insurers will offer this coverage, and even some that do might deny your application. Approval is given on a case-to-case basis for these diseases. But, many life insurance providers recognize the need for life insurance for individuals with digestive diseases, and offer policies to them.

Life insurance for digestive diseases might cost more than standard issue, based on multiple factors such as: your lifestyle, the health of your digestive system, your family medical history, and how compliant you are with keeping doctor’s appointments along with following your physician’s orders.

Important: Life insurance for Digestive Diseases is available, though the coverage might be limited and potentially more expensive.

How Do Digestive Diseases Affect Life Insurance Eligibility?

A diagnosis of digestive diseases isn’t the end of the line if you want to secure life insurance. There are treatments and medications available to treat these diseases with a good outcome. Much of the prognosis for your future health depends on you and how compliant you’re prepared to be with your doctor’s advice about managing it well.

One thing of note is that if you had life insurance before having digestive diseases, your premiums might increase when you renew your policy.

Standard life insurance might not be available to everyone with digestive diseases, but there are insurers that offer insurance products for specialized conditions. These particular providers may offer traditional life insurance to applicants with digestive diseases, provided their condition is well-managed. You may also get approval for group or guaranteed issue life insurance. For instance, if you have group insurance by way of an employer or organization, you can probably get life insurance.

People diagnosed with digestive diseases may consider researching to gain knowledge of how applications for life insurance work. It might be a struggle to work your way through all of the unfamiliar terms of insurance, but the security, financial protection, and peace of mind these policies give you is priceless.

Those with digestive diseases who had a life insurance policy in force before they were diagnosed with digestive diseases cannot have their policy canceled due to that diagnosis. This highlights how critical it is to secure life insurance coverage as soon as possible.

Note: A life insurance policy can’t be rescinded or have the rates raised if your digestive disease is diagnosed after the policy has been issued.

Life Insurance Underwriting Process For Digestive Diseases

A ground floor knowledge of an insurance underwriting process might be helpful when you’re shopping around for life insurance and have digestive diseases. Below are 5 steps in the underwriting process:

  1. Medical Examination: A medical examination is the first step in underwriting. It will help determine whether your application for coverage is approved or declined. You’ll have a physical exam, and next an insurance underwriter will assess your digestive diseases, with the emphasis on your general health.
  2. Review of Medical History: You’ll be asked to provide your medical records to the underwriter. The underwriter will want to know what kind of medical treatment you’re receiving or have received, along with how your health is after receiving any treatments.
  3. Lifestyle Evaluation: Your lifestyle choices will come under the eye of the underwriter, too. This includes habits such as smoking, drug use, and alcohol consumption. You should know that a healthy lifestyle might have a favorable influence on approval of your application.
  4. Risk Assessment: The underwriter will collect all of this information as well as the results of your physical exam, and then make an informed risk assessment of insuring your life. If you’re approved for coverage, a favorable assessment may affect the cost of your premiums.
  5. Policy Issuance: Once you make it through the underwriting process without being declined for coverage, the insurer will probably offer a life insurance policy. Depending on the assessment by the underwriter, your insurance coverage may come with increased rates or exclusions.

What Do Life Insurance Companies Consider When Someone With Digestive Diseases Applies For Coverage?

Digestive diseases include IBS, or Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, celiac disease, and diverticulitis. Millions of people in the USA are affected by these and other digestive diseases every year. These conditions may affect your rates and eligibility for life insurance.

Individuals with digestive diseases might not qualify for the best and lowest premiums, but may still qualify for standard rates with some insurance providers. Standard rates are usually reserved for people with a well controlled or moderate health condition, or people who have no significant family history of serious medical conditions like cancer or heart disease.

You might pay higher premiums than someone without any digestive diseases, but you will still be able to secure competitive rates with numerous insurance carriers.

When individuals with digestive diseases make an application for life insurance, there are multiple key elements that underwriters will take into consideration. Life insurance for high risk applicants is always more complicated and extensive than for someone in  average good health.

The first thing an insurance provider will ask about is how well your digestive diseases are being managed. They’ll look closely at your medical records, to review your symptoms and treatments. If your medical history shows that your condition is stable, it might increase your chance of approval for coverage.

Your daily lifestyle plays a big part in underwriting, also. Insurance providers will do an assessment of your health and lifestyle habits, such as alcohol consumption, smoking and drug use. A healthy lifestyle has a positive effect on your application. Your gender, age, and family medical history will be considered, too.

The most important factor if you have a digestive disease is that when it comes time to purchase life insurance, it must be well controlled.

The bottom line is that digestive diseases are frequently chronic conditions, which will be considered by the underwriter. Your prognosis for the future, current health condition, and diagnostic tests all have an effect on whether or not a company will issue life insurance to you.

Best Type Of Life Insurance If You Have Digestive Diseases

What types of life insurance are open to someone with digestive diseases? Below are 5 types that are available:

Whole Life Insurance

Coverage for your lifetime is what you get with whole life insurance, and it builds a cash value that increases with time. This type of life insurance could be a wise choice for anyone living with digestive diseases because it comes with a guaranteed death benefit, and your coverage will never expire. Whole life insurance usually has a higher rate than term life insurance.

Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance offers coverage for a specific length of time, typically between 10-35 years. It’s less expensive than whole life insurance, which makes it a viable option for someone with digestive diseases who wants adequate life insurance at an economic price.

Final Expense Life Insurance

Final expense life insurance, frequently called burial or funeral insurance, is designed to  take care of end of life expenses. Final expense policies normally have lenient underwriting, which might be helpful to someone with digestive diseases and who is having problems getting approval for traditional types of life insurance.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

Guaranteed issue life insurance provides coverage to pretty much everyone, regardless of any health conditions they may have. It could be an excellent option for those with digestive diseases who have been declined by other carriers. This type is usually more costly than some other kinds of life insurance, but if you’ve been turned down by other providers, it may be worth the higher premiums.

A guaranteed issue life insurance policy might have a graded death benefit. This means that if you have digestive diseases, your policy won’t cover any health problems related to that condition for a while, typically three years. You may also have accidental life insurance included with your policy.

Group Life Insurance

Group life insurance is most often offered through employers or other groups or organizations. For individuals with digestive diseases who have this option available, this could be an excellent way to get life insurance coverage without the extensive underwriting process sometimes involved with regular policies.


Important: Living benefit riders can also be a lifeline for Digestive Diseases. These optional additions to your policy can allow you to access a portion of your death benefit while still alive to help cover treatment expenses.

How To Buy Life Insurance With Digestive Diseases

Following these 4 steps will help you locate and buy life insurance if you have digestive diseases:

Research Your Options

Your initial step should be conducting research on a few likely insurance providers that offer coverage for people with digestive diseases. Some insurers offer term insurance along with whole life, and you should understand how important it is to know the differences between the two, before making a decision about which is best for your needs.


Understand The Underwriting Process

The majority of life insurance applications will ask you to share details of your health condition. The underwriting process for digestive diseases will almost certainly be more extensive than standard, and could mean higher premiums, as well.


Consider Employer Or Group Coverage

If you have access to group life insurance, it might well be your best bet. Group policies usually provide insurance coverage regardless of any health conditions you might have, digestive diseases included. You may not have to undergo a medical examination for group insurance.


Apply For Coverage

When you’ve decided on an insurer with coverage that seems a good fit for your needs, you’re ready to complete and submit an application. This could involve a lengthy health questionnaire, along with a thorough medical exam.


How Much Does Life Insurance Cost For Digestive Diseases?

The rates you pay can vary widely, based on the digestive disease condition you have, as well as its severity.

Preferred Vs. Standard Rates For A $500,000, 20-Year Policy:

Age Gender Preferred Rates Standard Rates
25 Female $20.91 $31.90
Male $26.97 $38.88
35 Female $25.55 $38.17
Male $30.51 $46.54
45 Female $48.15 $77.39
Male $61.18 $96.97
55 Female $110.50 $171.49
Male $152.64 $281.84

The insurance underwriters will assess your general health, your family health history, and sometimes your driving record. Those with chronic digestive diseases such as Crohn’s Disease and have test results that show evidence of current issues could still get a standard rating. Conversely, the insurance company could decline your application. This is dependent on the insurer’s underwriting rules.

For someone with digestive diseases to qualify for life insurance, an provider will want proof that your condition is controlled and well-managed. This means you must provide the underwriter access to your medical records showing evidence of regular checkups with a doctor, along with adherence to any therapy prescribed. Things like your family medical history, your overall health status, your age and your lifestyle choices, such as smoking, will be considered as well.

If you have digestive diseases, submitting a positive application may help when you’re attempting to get life insurance. Show the insurer that you are doing well, compliant with keeping your doctors appointments and following suggestions for staying healthy  with a healthy lifestyle, and living a normal life with your condition.

Can Insurance Companies Deny Coverage To Digestive Diseases?

Yes, insurers can deny applications for life insurance coverage if you have digestive diseases. If you’re wondering if you have to divulge this information, don’t go there. Being less than truthful about your condition for the purpose of securing insurance is fraud and is one of the only things a company can cancel your policy over.

It’s important to note that medical progress has advanced the treatment for digestive diseases. Besides bringing about longer life expectancy, it means a shift in the way some insurance providers view insurability of individuals with digestive diseases.

Perhaps the key factor in whether or not an insurance carrier will approve a life insurance application, as well as how high the rates will be, is how the person with digestive diseases is doing on a daily basis. The longer it has been without any big problems, the more likely it is that you’ll be approved for coverage.

What Will Insurers Ask About Digestive Diseases?

Here are some questions that are likely to be asked by the insurer when a person with digestive diseases applies for life insurance coverage

  • Current age
  • Gender
  • Current and past health history
  • Family history
  • Smoking habits
  • Driving history
  • What’s the date of your first diagnosis or onset?
  • What parts of your Gastrointestinal (GI) tract are affected?
  • What medications are you taking?
  • What’s the date of your most recent colonoscopy?
  • What’s the frequency of your flare-ups and/or symptoms?

Life Insurance Options If You Are Denied Coverage

Carriers may deny coverage for digestive diseases if you have chronic and on-going problems. In that worst case scenario, you’ll still have options for life insurance.

Guaranteed Issue policies are an attractive option if you have digestive diseases and have been declined for traditional life insurance.

Group life insurance, by way of an employer or other organization, offers coverage no matter what health conditions you might have. If you’re stuck, there are specialized services on the internet such as Insuranceopedia that can help you locate life insurance coverage if you have digestive diseases.

Note: Guaranteed issue policies are an excellent option if other companies have denied your application for whole, universal, or term life insurance policies.

Here are 3 tips that might help in your search for life insurance:

  • Know Your Needs: You should have more than just a vague idea of how much life insurance you need. Do the math and total up all of the expenses you want your life insurance to cover if you’re not around. Expenses like college tuition for your children, maintenance to your home, insurance for vehicles, homeowners insurance, health insurance will all need to be provided. Plus you’ll want to replace your income, cover unexpected medical bills for your family, car repairs and/or new vehicles, and more.
  • Explore Policy Types: Look into Graded Death Benefit policies and Guaranteed Issue life insurance. Both of these types of coverage are good options for people with digestive diseases.
  • Use Specialized Services: Check out services such as Insuranceopedia, that fetches  quotes from various providers, helps you compare rates and locate life insurance that is affordable as well as adequate for your needs.

What Are Digestive Diseases?

A digestive disease is any health condition that develops in the digestive tract. Conditions may vary from mild to severe. Some common problems include cancer, heartburn, irritable bowel syndrome, and lactose intolerance. Other digestive diseases include: gallstones, cholecystitis, and cholangitis.

The most common symptoms of digestive disorders include bloating, bleeding, diarrhea, constipation, heartburn, nausea, vomiting and pain.

The gastrointestinal (GI) tract consists of the mouth, stomach, and intestines. Together with the liver, gallbladder and pancreas, these organs all work together to absorb nutrients and expel waste.

Disturbances to the process can bring about a wide variety of symptoms, from cramps to vomiting. A lot of these digestive tract problems may go away in time, posing very little risk of complications. But, some common stomach issues can be the result of several digestive disorders. Knowing the signs and symptoms of digestive disorders can help people identify them and seek proper treatment.

Health experts split these digestive problems into two categories:

  1. Organic GI disorders
  2. Functional GI disorders.

Organic GI disorders happen when there are structural abnormalities in the digestive system, which keeps it from working as it should.

In functional GI disorders, the GI tract seems to be structurally normal but doesn’t function as it should.

Some of the more common digestive disorders include:

  • Ulcerative Colitis
  • Gallstones
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
  • Celiac Disease
  • Crohn’s Disease

Other Health Concerns That Can Affect Your Life Insurance

When you make an application for life insurance, insurance providers will evaluate your overall health status. Here are 17 common health conditions that could affect your approval or the price of your premiums for life insurance:

  • Heart Disease: A common but serious health condition that may cause higher premiums  or outright denial of coverage
  • High Blood Pressure: Well-managed hypertension may have a slight effect on your life insurance coverage or premium
  • Alzheimer’s/Dementia: These conditions can have a significant effect on insurability
  • AIDS: With modern advances in medicine, many providers will now offer life insurance policies to people with HIV
  • Liver Disease: Conditions like cirrhosis may affect your life insurance policy
  • Asthma: Depending on the severity, asthma may influence insurance rates
  • High Cholesterol: A level over 200 could mean higher premiums
  • Substance Use Disorders: A history of drug or alcohol abuse can affect insurability
  • Depression: Mental health conditions such as depression may affect coverage
  • Cancer: Depending on the stage and type of cancer, it can impact insurability
  • Diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes can increase your premium rates
  • Kidney Transplants
  • Stroke: A history of stroke may increase premium rates
  • Lung Disease: Chronic conditions such as COPD can mean higher premiums
  • Obesity: A higher BMI may cause higher insurance costs
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis: This chronic condition can lead to higher premiums
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Epilepsy
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Breast Cancer
  • Down Syndrome
  • Sleep Apnea
  • Children With Autism
  • Disabilities


Can Someone With Digestive Diseases Qualify For Life Insurance?

The short answer is yes. But, this mainly depends on the insurance company and the health condition, along with the type of policy. Some providers will approve coverage to someone with digestive diseases, while others won’t. If the condition is not in the acute phase, but chronic and basically controlled, many providers will offer life insurance to a person with digestive diseases.

People with digestive diseases might be approved for standard life insurance provided all these criteria are met:

  • Their future prognosis is good
  • There is a low risk of health complications
  • They receive treatment as needed
  • Their condition is well managed

What Insurance Is Best For Someone With Digestive Diseases?

In many cases, a Guaranteed Issue policy is the wisest choice for someone with digestive diseases. This is especially true if the condition is chronic, or if they have comorbidities.

Are People With Digestive Diseases Classed As Having a Critical Illness In Insurance?

Yes, there are quite a few serious health conditions that can accompany or result from digestive diseases. For that reason, some digestive diseases are classed as critical while others aren’t. It just depends on the condition.


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